PrologueGiving up Ariadne

Hermione slowly rocked in the chair as she held her pregnant belly. She gently smoothed the robe over where her child lay. Any day now, she was due to have a child that was the creation of a one-night stand. It had happened in the aftermath of all the partying, and revelry, after the defeat of Voldemort. The important thing is that Harry lived, even though some lives were lost. She had come through virtually unscathed, as had a few others. But some lives were lost. It still hurt to think about Dumbledore and McGonagall, but they saw that all of the students were well protected.

It had been four years since she had graduated, and he hadn't changed a bit. He still snapped at all of them as if they were first years, and he didn't look as if he had a proper bath in weeks. She was so grateful to be alive that night; she didn't want anyone to be alone. So, she had disappeared into the dungeons and accosted him. She didn't exactly know what had come over her as she dragged him to the table in his lab. She murmured whispered words of desire, and kissed him fully on the mouth. He had whispered back in kind, and answered her kisses with his own. It had been a nearly silent affair, until she screamed at her release and he answered her with a grunt. She left before morning, not wanting to experience or see his shame first-hand.

Hermione hadn't taken the proper precautions, and a few weeks later, as she stared at the Muggle pregnancy test, she knew exactly what the consequences would be; a child. She did the only thing a girl in her situation would do; she called her best friend. Between the two of them, they developed a plan.

"'Mione, are you okay?"

"I'm fine, Gin. She's just not letting me sleep."

She and Ginny Potter, née Weasley, decided that she would pose as their surrogate mother. Ginny and Harry had been trying to have children ever since they had gotten married, and that made Hermione's pregnancy opportune. As long as this child didn't look like HIM, everything would go according to plan. She had plans to continue her studies in France, and she was going to go to Japan to study under the oldest living potions master. She was going to travel, and live life, but now, she was going to give up her child.

Hermione stood up and reached for Ginny's hands. Giving them a gentle squeeze, she said, "I think it's time to wake Harry, and go to St. Mungo's." She gingerly reached for the small of her back, and rubbed small circles, trying to soothe the aching muscles there. Ginny's hands soon joined hers, and she gave a little whimper of pleasure.

"Don't worry, Hermione. I'm sure everything will be fine. One of the Midwitches is a Muggle-born, so she knows all the complications that could happen," Ginny said as she took Hermione into her and Harry's room. She shook Harry, and smiled at the way he sat up, and blinked sleepily in the dim light coming in from the hallway. She gently tussled his hair and said, "Harry, it's time."

He threw the covers off, and grabbed for his glasses. "Why didn't you wake me sooner? We should have taken her when the pains first started!" He grabbed for a robe and a suitcase that was sitting behind the door. He stopped, and looked at the two women giggling at him from the hallway. "What is so funny?"

"Harry, you have enough time to change into some proper clothing," Hermione giggled. "Oh!" She placed her hands on either side of her abdomen, and winced as a contraction passed. Slowly breathing in and out, she added, "You may want to hurry though." The child was kicking hard against her ribcage; she began to slowly breathe in her nose and out her mouth.

Ginny grabbed flue powder and said, "St. Mungo's!" She put Hermione into the fireplace, and waited until she left. She grabbed a bit for herself and told Harry, "I expect to see you there soon. We will be in the maternity ward."

When she was set up in a room, Hermione asked, "How could I let myself be so stupid? Why didn't I do the right thing and just leave that man alone?"

"Because you're an angel of mercy," Ginny said. Then she sniggered, "That and you were hot for him and his body." She ducked when Hermione threw a pillow at her. "Come on, 'Mione. Both you and I know better."

"I don't want to admit it." Hermione sucked in a breath, and slowly panted it out. She fell back and said, "I don't want to do this ever again. Be grateful that I'm doing this for you."

Ariadne Medora Potter was born at 12:35 in the afternoon on August 1st, exactly nine months after the fall of Voldemort. Her birth mother left a note for Ginny, and left after she saw her daughter for the first time. She was leaving Brittan to continue her studies. Nobody knew when she would be back, but they knew that when it happened, it was going to be something spectacular.

Author's Note:
This was originally a plot bunny I borrowed from emmakitty over at WIKTT. I saw it and decided that it would be fun. Her attempt is here at titled "Both Your Houses"